Seriously, that’s why they won.
In a 6-6 game in the ninth, Mike Napoli tried to score all of the way from first on an Elvis Andrus single to right. The relay from Mitch Maier to Eric Hosmer to Brayan Pena got to the plate in plenty of time.
In fact, there was so much time that Pena assumed Napoli would try to bowl him over in his only home of scoring (Click here to see the play).
Instead, Napoli slid in under an out-of-position Pena and home-plate umpire Mike Estabrook surprisingly made the correct call. Pena’s tag came way up the body on Napoli’s arm after Napoli it looked like both of Napoli’s feet had already touched home plate.
The shocking ending could overshadow what would have been the prime storyline for the game: more struggles from both Neftali Feliz and Joakim Soria. Feliz, who entered a tie game in the top of the ninth, gave up an unearned run and nearly got charged with a loss to add to his three blown saves in four appearances against the Royals this season.
Soria, though, let him off the hook. He gave up a game-tying homer to Nelson Cruz to start the bottom of the ninth. Two more hits followed, but it looked like Soria would escape with the score tied when Napoli attempted to score. Instead, he was charged with both the blown save and the loss.
Mets’ outfielder Curtis Granderson has been named the 2016 recipient of the Roberto Clemente Award, an annual distinction bestowed on the major league players whose dedication to the game of baseball is evident both on and off the field.
Granderson is the 47th recipient of the award since its introduction in 1971, and, according to MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo, the fourth Met honored with the distinction following former members Gary Carter (1989), Al Leiter (2000), and Carlos Delgado (2006).
The 35-year-old contributed 30 home runs and a .237/.355/.464 line during the Mets’ 87-75 run in 2016, but it was his work off the field that set him apart. Over the past six years, Granderson helped fund a new baseball facility at his alma mater, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and partnered with Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign to combat childhood obesity. He has also been recognized for donations to the YMCA, United Neighborhood Houses, and City Harvest, among other charitable organizations. Most notably, he founded the Grand Kids Foundation, an organization that has furthered the education, fitness, and health of kids living in Chicago since 2007.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred recognized Granderson’s efforts in a brief ceremony preceding Game 3 of the World Series:
Curtis Granderson is an outstanding ambassador for our game and a positive role model for kids. His commitment to the many communities that have touched his life and the great impact of these efforts makes him a very deserving recipient of our most prestigious award. On behalf of Major League Baseball and all of our clubs, I congratulate Curtis and thank him and all of our nominees this year for everything they do to make a difference in the lives of others.
We all get inspiration from various sources. Sometimes, it comes from a mentor or peer who has excelled in their field. Sometimes, it’s a video of a dog owner dressing up as his golden retriever’s favorite chew toy (just me? Okay).
If you’re Cubs’ manager Joe Maddon, it’s Michael Scott, regional manager of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin, Inc., founder of the Michael Scott Paper Company, and one-time star of the hit television show Fundle Bundle. At least, that’s what he told the press during the club’s pregame conference on Friday afternoon.
Thankfully, the Cubs don’t have to worry about Maddon emulating the more outlandish behaviors Steve Carell exhibited on The Office. If anything, the praise Michael heaps on himself as the World’s Best Boss could be aptly applied to Maddon’s managerial style — Spencer Gifts mug and all.